THE INDORE bench of MP High Court has directed Indore District Collector, who is the administrator of the famous Khajrana temple, to ensure that purity in administration is maintained in the day-to-day affairs of the shrine.
The shrine draws devotees from far and near and receives the largest amount of charity in the region. “In a pious place, where God resides, the atmosphere has to be clean and unpolluted in all respects,” the bench of Justice A M Sapre observed while dismissing a contempt petition filed by 23-year old ex-priest of the temple, Pandit Rambhuvan Tiwari, who charged temple manager Ram Shankar Gupta with allegedly demanding a bribe of Rs 2,000 to retain his services.
The court also directed District Collector to look into the grievances of the petitioner, who in statements to the court said that the temple manager asked him to quit in January 2005 without assigning any reason. He was a temple priest since 1999.
“There is no reason as to why the Collector would not go into the grievances as directed by this court (earlier in April 2006),” the HC Judge observed in his dismissal note.
Tiwari first filed a writ petition in the HC bench in February this year in which he alleged that persons responsible for managing the affairs of temple under MP Shri Ganpati Mandir Khajrana (Indore) Adhiniyam-2003 have been demanding illegal gratification to re-induct him into the team of pujaris performing puja in temple.
The court in its April 2006 order asked the Collector to look into the matter and ensure purity of administration as well as of the Act provisions.
Since the administration took no step, Rambhuvan moved a contempt petition in August, which was dismissed last Wednesday, but not without a similar note to the temple administrator.
In the written documents submitted before the court, Tiwari alleged that manager Gupta, who is a retired SDM, has appointed three members of the same family – Rajnarayan Dube, his son Sangam Dube and his nephew Ashish Dube - as temple priests though only the administrator can make appointments.
The Khajrana shrine dedicated to Lord Ganesh with 32 temples was taken over by the district administration in December 2000.